The federal government has described reports that it had budgeted N10.6 billion for COVID-19 vaccine transportation as totally false.
Recall that an online newspaper had claimed the federal government had budgeted N10.6 billion for the transportation of COVID-19 vaccines to the 36 states of the federation and the federal capital territory.
But speaking after President Muhammadu Buhari and Vice President Yemi Osinbajo received their COVID-19 vaccine on Saturday, the executive director of the National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA), Faisal Shuaib, said the Coalition Against COVID-19 (CACOVID), has already undertaken to distribute the vaccines to states at no expense to the government.
According to Shuaib, a plane provided by CACOVID will deliver the vaccines to states without functional ariports.
The NPHCDA director added that a delivery van will be used for states without functional airports.
He said: “I mean, I’m hearing this from you for the first time. It doesn’t make any sense that on the one hand, we’ve communicated very clearly to Nigerians that the Coalition Against COVID-19 (CACOVID), a private sector initiative, has provided a cargo plane that will help deliver the vaccines from Abuja to all states that have functional airports.
“For those that do not have functional airports, there is a delivery van that will convey the vaccines from those airports to the states without functionality.
“I do not see how that is going to cost N10 billion. So there is no truth in that information.”
“The only cost we’re going to incur is the cost of delivering the vaccines from any airport to nearby states that don’t have functional airports. Clearly that cannot be N10.6 billion,” he added.
”So it is not correct to say that the federal government is going to be expending N10.6 billion to transport vaccines to the state. That is incredulous.”